Despite repeated offers of help, the one and only time that Mr Picardo showed Mr Azopardi the drafts of the MOUs and Concordat on Gibraltar was the day before they were published. On that day Mr Azopardi was allowed to read them for a few minutes but not take copies of them.
When doing so, Mr Azopardi made the point to Mr Picardo that as these were being shown to him for the first time and he was reading four MOUs, the protocol and the concordat all in the space of a few minutes, the Government should not assume the GSD agreed with any content and that the GSD would consider the full implications of the deal for Gibraltar once copies were provided and these were published. That is what actually happened.
Mr Picardo’s distortion of the truth and his attempt to make it seem as if the GSD were actually involved in shaping the deal that he ultimately concluded is a scandalous misrepresentation intended to divert attention from his bad deal, for which he is responsible alone.
GSD Leader Keith Azopardi said: “The GSD stands by its position that it would have explored and made efforts to negotiate a better deal for Gibraltar at the withdrawal stage and would negotiate a better future relationship with the EU. It is for the electorate to decide who should have that task after the next election.
We do not know what will happen when the UK Parliament vote on the Withdrawal Agreement. If, as is expected, this is defeated the best thing that could happen is for Article 50 to be withdrawn and for there to be a second referendum on whether the Withdrawal Agreement should be accepted or we should remain in the EU. The GSD is clear that it would support any attempt to remain and to abandon Mr Picardo’s bad deal for Gibraltar that gives Spain a say in our affairs. “